Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Re that misnamed so-called Shroud of Turin: let's rephrase STURP's 1981 Summary, based strictly on the hard evidence, leaving preconceptions to one side...

Above is a screen grab of the  1981 STURP Summary (taken from shroud.com)


Below is my annotated version, showing how I think it should have been presented, given the yawning gaps and uncertainties in the data ...

STURP's original: black font. My preferred version - blue italics!

(Photo-gallery to follow)

STURP Summary

No pigments, paints, dyes or stains have been found on the fibrils. X-ray, fluorescence and microchemistry on the fibrils preclude the possibility of paint being used as a method for creating the image. Ultra Violet and infrared evaluation confirm these studies. 

No conventional pigments, paints, dyes or stains have been found on the fibrils.  X-ray, fluorescence and microchemistry on the fibrils preclude the possibility of  an artist's paint  palette playing a role in creating the image.  Ultraviolet and infrared evaluation confirm these studies. 

What cannot be ignored is the negative (tone-reversed) nature of the body image. Artists would hardly elect to paint a subject as a negative unless wishing to suggest the image had been IMPRINTED onto the linen. But a better more convincing representation of an imprint is obtained, not with freehand brush, loaded with paint, but by actual IMPRINTING. How? Answer: by coating the subject from head to foot with a suitable imprinting agent, and either pressing subject onto linen, or, more probably,  vice versa - by pressing linen down firmly onto the subject!

(Note: nowhere does the STURP Summary make any mention whatsoever of (a) the tone-reversed negative  or (b)  the likelihood of a negative image having been acquired via imprinting- as distinct from painting . Bizarre! Truly bizarre! ) 

Computer image enhancement and analysis by a device known as a VP-8 image analyzer show that the image has unique, three-dimensional information encoded in it.

Computer image enhancement and analysis by a device known as a VP-8 image analyzer show that the  2D image  responds well to 3D-rendering computer software. However, that is equally true of imprints generally, and indeed any 2D figure or graphic with variations in image intensity, the latter being elevated  proportionately onto an imaginary z axis.  That is not say there won't be distortions etc, especially where paintings and photographs are concerned, due largely to shadowing (equally responsive as main image to 3D software!).  Summary: the 3D-response contributes nothing to one's understanding as to how the body image was produced.

 Microchemical evaluation has indicated no evidence of any spices, oils, or any biochemicals known to be produced by the body in life or in death. 

 Microchemical analysis has failed to detect the presence of any spices, oils, or indeed any biochemicals known to be produced by the body, either in life or in death. 

That could be seen as further evidence against the Linen being a burial shroud, whether authentic or simulated, and by default, supplies circumstantial evidence in favour of it as Joseph of Arimathea's actual transport linen, or more probably a  medieval mock-up thereof.

It is clear that there has been a direct contact of the Shroud with a body, which explains certain features such as scourge marks, as well as the blood. 

It is clear there has been a direct contact with a body - or a facsimile thereof - given the dimensions, negative image etc. 

Features such as blood and scourge marks, while serving to reinforce that impression, need to be treated with caution: none of the blood stains, scourge marks included, display any indication of torn or punctured skin in the body image, and may accordingly have been applied separately, either as genuine blood, artificial blood, or a combination of the two, not necessarily simultaneously (e.g. either real or artificial blood as later touching up to restore or enhance colour, given that blood darkens with age).

However, while this type of contact might explain some of the features of the torso, it is totally incapable of explaining the image of the face with the high resolution that has been amply demonstrated by photography.

One noteworthy feature deserving of comment is the imprint of the face: it displays a superior definition than the rest of the body, even if some aspects are distorted - notably a flattened  and somewhat distorted nose. 

It is possible that the imprinting procedure for the face differed from that used elsewhere.  Reasons? One can only speculate, but if the body image was of medieval fabrication, as seems likely (see above), a compromise was reached between conveying the notion of a  seemingly realistic  albeit somewhat fuzzy whole body imprint left in age-yellowed sweat and blood to signal a victim of crucifixion, while communicating greater detail in the face alone to signal that it was indeed a particular victim of crucifixion with beard, moustache, shoulder length hair etc.

The basic problem from a scientific point of view is that some explanations which might be tenable from a chemical point of view, are precluded by physics. Contrariwise, certain physical explanations which may be attractive are completely precluded by the chemistry.

Omit - lacking specifics

 For an adequate explanation for the image of the Shroud, one must have an explanation which is scientifically sound, from a physical, chemical, biological and medical viewpoint. At the present, this type of solution does not appear to be obtainable by the best efforts of the members of the Shroud Team. 

Omit - lacking specifics

Furthermore, experiments in physics and chemistry with old linen have failed to reproduce adequately the phenomenon presented by the Shroud of Turin. 

Omit - lacking specifics

The scientific concensus is that the image was produced by something which resulted in oxidation, dehydration and conjugation of the polysaccharide structure of the microfibrils of the linen itself.  Such changes can be duplicated in the laboratory by certain chemical and physical processes. A similar type of change in linen can be obtained by sulfuric acid or heat. 

The most immediate and obvious recipient of the body image is the linen itself, comprising mainly cellulose, but with minor components as well (hemicelluloses, lignin etc).  

Endowing cellulose with colour is not easy, needing not just dilute sulphuric acid to model in the test-tube, but concentrated  acid (both a powerful chemical dehydrating agent as well as oxidizing agent as well - if hot)- but scarcely realistic or credible. 

So a question mark needs to be placed over chemical modification of the major linen component, and by the same token, heat alone.  In the context of medieval fabrication, in which an imprinting medium may have been deployed, consideration needs to be given to extraneous non-linen components. Candidates? One can but speculate.

However, there are no chemical or physical methods known which can account for the totality of the image, nor can any combination of physical, chemical, biological or medical circumstances explain the image adequately.

There is a possible clue that might guide future research. It is the finding that the body image fibres are bleachable with any of three different chemical reagents - namely diimide, hydrazine and alkaline hydrogen peroxide -  all having something in common (they interrupt colour-conferring conjugated systems of single and double bonds in organic molecules). Firstly that finding should  serve to exclude from consideration inorganic paint pigments referred to earlier. The chromophore is organic, i.e. carbon-based. Dr.Walter McCrone please note!

Thus, the answer to the question of how the image was produced or what produced the image remains, now, as it has in the past, a mystery.

The question as to how the image was produced or what produced the image remains a matter of speculation unless or until that is we have more detailed chemical information on the nature of the body image chromophore. 

Modified cellulose? Improbable!   Maybe a type of extraneous addition  to the linen that lends itself better to introduction of conjugated double bonds, maybe via thermal  or chemical input, and thus development of yellow coloration. Melanoidins?  (High molecular weight   i.e. particulate solid  endproducts of complex Maillard reactions between reduciong sugars and amines involving repeated chemical condensation and polymerization). 

We can conclude for now that the Shroud image is that of a real human form of a scourged, crucified man.

We can conclude that the Shroud image is a representation of the crucified Jesus, imprinted onto Joseph of Arimathea's transport linen. Authentic (1st century)? Or a medieval simulation thereof?  The essential next step is radiocarbon dating.

 It is not the product of an artist. 

It is not the product of an artist (but possibly/probably that of one or more medieval artisans who have deployed whole body imprinting, using an unknown imprinting medium, maybe heat or chemically-assisted to generate a faint tan colour as if ancient age-yellowed sweat.

The blood stains are composed of hemoglobin and also give a positive test for serum albumin.  

The blood stains appear to contain hemoglobin and also give a positive colorimetric test for serum albumin, based on dye-binding.

The image is an ongoing mystery and until further chemical studies are made, perhaps by this group of scientists, or perhaps by some scientists in the future, the problem remains unsolved.

Insufficient data are presently available to identify the image chromophore with certainty, or even to rule in or rule out chemical modifcation of the cellulose or some other linen constituent. 

 Further chemical studies are required. All one can say with certainty is that the chromophore relies on conjugated double bonds for its colour (thus accounting for the bleaching action of the three highly specific double-bond targeting reagents): inorganic paint pigments can be firmly excluded.

If  I had to sum up the '81 STURP Summary in just two words, what would they be?

Answer: woolly obscurantism... yet we're told  recently by STURP's Documenting Photographer (now STERA President and the owner of the shroud,com site)  that it was a model for good science, a shining example for us modern day scientists to follow! 

Er no. The project was shot through  from the word go with  preconceptions and inner contradictions.  (Like later claiming that contact imprinting was out of the question,  that it was imprinted  photograph-like across air gaps, due to lack, we're informed, of inescapable lateral distortion, despite the body image having no sides!

Further reading:  https://shroudofturinwithoutallthehype.wordpress.com/2018/10/05/no-mr-barrie-m-schwortz-sturp-did-not-provide-an-example-that-future-shroud-researchers-can-use-to-carefully-plan-their-own-work-sturp-showed-how-not-to-plan-or-execute-objectiv/

Photo Gallery to follow! (Yes, this posting is a work in progress)

Photo Gallery

Fig 1 : Left:  a negative image of my own hand (but NOT a photograph in the first instance - merely recorded as such for posterity).
  Right: the same image after tone-reversal (which can be achieved either by photography or via digital computer software).

So how was the initial negative image captured, if not by photography? Answer: as a CONTACT IMPRINT. I simply wetted my hand, and pressed it down onto dark-coloured fabric.
 (Note the absence of so-called "lateral distortion" which we were told by STURP's Director precluded imprinting by contact in the case of the so-called Shroud of Turin. Nonsense! Complete and utter nonsense! One simply keeps the sides of the imprinted item away from the cloth: no side contact, no lateral distortion!)

Fig.2:  Performance of those hand imprints of mine (negative and tone-reversed positive) in modern-day 3D-rendering
software (ImageJ)

Observe that both the original negative and the tone-reversed positive display a 3D appearance after applying the 3D software. The 3D-rendering is due to the software - not the input image. All the latter has to do is supply variations in  2D image intensity, no matter how acquired.
The claim in the '81 STURP Summary that the so-called Shroud of Turin body image displays "unique encoded 3D" is also total nonsense. That fallacious claim is trotted out even now,  nearly 40 years later as if established fact. Nothing could be further from the truth. Shame on you STURP for foisting your pseudoscience on the world at large, and continuing to do so, such of you as are still around...

Fig.3: Here's another negative image, again of my hand, and its tone-reversed positive.  But on this occasion it was  not by liquid  - which tends to spread too far - but by SOLID imprinting, using powdered charcoal. Note the near photograph-like quality of the imprint!

Might a powder have been used to capture the body image on the so-called Shroud of Turin?  I say YES!  Which powder? Answer: plain white flour, as used for breadmaking.  How was the yellow colour produced?  Answer: via heat-treatment of course (roasting the imprinted linen in an oven, or even over the glowing  red hot embers of a flame-free open fire).

Fig.4: Here are some flour imprints of my hand (not my best, not my worst) obtained with two different variants of the imprinting technique:

(For some reason the following stays red in red font, despite several attempts to replace red with black!) 
The one on the left employed a thick slurry of flour in water. That on the right was obtained by dusting the oil-smeared hand with dry flour,  shaking off excess flour, then imprinting onto wet linen. Both imprints were then developed with heat to generate the negative images as Maillard browning products.
 Note the different character of the two imprints as regards overall definition, sharpness of image boundaries etc

Fig.5:  Here's an imprint of my face, obtained using the wet slurry technique.

No heat development was needed: photoediting alone was sufficient to enhance the natural faint yellow colour of plain white flour:

Who says the nose makes it impossible to imprint the face?  Not if one presses hard to flatten and distort the nose - as appears to have happened to the nose of the Man on the Linen!

Fig 6:  contact imprint from a miniature plastic figurine, just 14cm in size, obtained via the dry-flour imprinting technique onto wet linen followed by heating of the imprinted linen.

Observe absence of any "lateral distortion" of the image. Why? Because the figurine was first smeared with vegetable oil, and the flour then sprinkled vertically from above, making scarcely if any contact with the sides (which could have been wiped off had that been the case).   As before, the flour imprint was heated in an oven to develop the colour of the negative imprint. The  negative, tone-reversed image you see is, I consider, a miniature of that on the Turin Linen, obtained via essentially the same procedure. In short, it is wrong for numerous websites to claim, as they do, that the body image on the so-called Shroud continues to elude science, 40 years post that hugely flawed STURP investigation . No it does not. It is easily explainable as a contact imprint, one  whose colour has been developed by thermal means.

Fig.7: Imprinting with sweat and blood (whether authentic or 14th century simulation) not a new idea:

See this paper by Dorothy Crispino, with its reference to Cardinal Gorrevod implicating sweat and blood as early as the late 15th century: 

Fig.8: Indeed, the idea of imprinting by contact immediately after descent from the cross, and receiving into Joseph of Arimathea's "fine linen" (whether with bodily sweat,  or possibly anointing oils - see pot in foreground) was taken up by early painters, notably Roviere in the 16th century:

So what happened to cause the  immediate post-crucifixion First Day imprinting narrative  to be summarily dismissed, and be replaced by supernatural Third Day resurrectional auto-photography (mediated we're told by a burst of corpse-generated radiation). 

Answer: look to STURP, notably its Director and prime initiator, John Jackson PhD  plus colleagues, and their allegedly cause-and-effect correlation of image intensity with "cloth-body distance".


The key sentence in the above paper is this one:  "The frontal image on the Shroud of Turin is shown to be consistent with a body shape covered with a naturally draping cloth in the sense that the image can be derived from a single global mapping function of distance between these two surfaces".

Yes, but stating something to be consistent is not the same as demonstrating a real cause-and-effect relationship. Most if not all textbooks of statistics include a warning about the the danger of spurious correlations (my Yule and Kendall back in the 1960s illustrated with a graph showing a near perfect correlation between year-on-year increase in alcohol consumption and that of schoolteachers' salaries!).

There is an alternative explanation for the APPARENT correlation between image intensity and cloth-body distance, measured on a subject with loosely-draped linen.  It's the model that's wrong, assuming that loosely-draped linen. See my earlier 2018 posting on the subject, one in which linen is pressed firmly down on the subject, with imaging at the contact points ONLY!

Fig.10: Quickie comparison of two rival imaging models: 

(A) the quasi-photographic model of Jackson et al  featuring pro-authenticity loosely-draped linen, permitting imaging across air gaps, see red pointers,  albeit weaker; (B) the  non-authenticity medieval-imprinting model, strictly imaging-by-contact only, where prominences like the nose are subject to greater contact pressure , see yellow pointers, to permit  physical contact with lower relief.

Fig.11:  Here's a current Page 5 entry under  a Google Any Time search for (shroud of turin). 

Click on the above link to the Chicago-based McCrone Research Institute, and what do you find?  Be prepared for a surprise. Correction - a cobweb-festooned 40 year old surprise that should  by rights have departed gracefully  from the literature decades ago!

Fig 12:  Yes, McCrone, or rather his survivors, are still maintaining that the tan-coloured body chromophore is "red ochre", i.e. inorganic iron oxide, Fe2O3, would you believe it?

Here's a copy of an email I sent the McCrone Research Institute 6 days ago (blue font, thus far no reply or acknowledgement):

Title: Er, why do you continue to promote your founder's fallacious iron oxide paint pigment claim re Turin Shroud body image?

From: sciencebod01@aol.com>
To: info@mcri.org>
Date: Fri, 16 Aug 2019 

Hello folks

I've just been reading, correction, re-reading your founder's views  re that so-called "Shroud", still prominent in Google rankings.

They start with this statement:

"The faint sepia image is made up of billions of submicron pigment particles (red ochre and vermilion) in a collagen tempera medium. The pigments red ochre and vermilion with the collagen tempera medium was a common paint composition during the 14th century; before which, no one had ever heard of the Shroud."

I can understand the image chromophore being mistaken for iron oxide  (aka red ochre) 40 years ago. But why is that view still being promoted?

40 years ago,  STURP's Adler and Heller showed that the image chromophore was organic, i.e. carbon-based, through being bleachable by reducing agents (diimide, hydrazine, alkaline hydrogen peroxide) that act on conjugated C=C double bonds . One cannot expect an inorganic metal oxide like Fe2O3 to be bleached by any of those three agents!

So why continue to promote an early misidentification, even if understandable at the time?

I personally (a retired PhD biomedical scientist) have been researching the so-called Shroud for well over 7 years. I too believe it to be of medieval manufacture, but NOT a painting (instead a roasted organic whole-body negative IMPRINT, where the final sepia-coloured chromophore is almost certainly a mix of high molecular weight melanoidins, as first proposed by STURP's Chemical Director,  Raymond N.Rogers).  However, I consider your founder was correct about one thing - in identifying the chromophore as solid and microparticulate (sub-micron in size).  

So how about publishing an updated version of your founder's message, ensuring that his particle microscopy does not get dismissed through having been over-hasty with the chemistry?

Let me know if you would consider a joint paper between myself and your research institute as an updated corrective. 

Do you by any chance still have any of Walter McCrone's image fibres from 1978? If so, they could be the basis for a new round of microscopy - focused on the precise location of the body  image chromophore (which I maintain to be inside the SCW cores, not restricted to the PCW as maintained by modern-day sindonologists, keen to promote their miraculous pro-authenticity image-formation mechanisms (corona discharges, uv pulsed laser beams, sub-atomic particles, earthquakes etc etc).

Kind regards

Colin  Berry
Herts, UK

So then, what is the way ahead assuming (a) Turin allows a limited STURP Mk2 (?) and (b) it it's restricted, as before, to - at best - individual image fibres,  maybe dissected out with a blade rather than contaminated with sticky tape?

Answer: not easy, given the likely paucity of specimen for analysis. As before, microscopy would seem to bw the best bet, also given priority in STURP Mk 1 with the dispatch of Rogers'  stripped-off sticky tape sample to microscopist Walter McCrone in the first instance.   However, what mustn't be repeated in a second round is the exclusive focus, at least initially, on microscopy, unaided by microchemistry.  (Thank goodness for Adler and Heller's later testing, notably the  image bleaching studies,  when they finally received samples from McCrone).

So is there a straightforward, previously omitted chemical test that can be applied to image fibres, not to exclude iron oxide (already performed, hat tip to Adler and Heller) but to confirm Rogers' alternative to oh-so-speculative prematurely-aged cellulose, namely those high molecular weight Maillard browning products, aka melanoidins?  I wish I could say there was, but years of literature searching have failed to unearth a simple or even involved test for those pesky entities we call "melanoidins" (read: chemical Mount Everest).

So what's the stand-in solution(s) where any STURP Mk2 is concerned?

There are two that come to mind.

The first is to acquire some tentative evidence at least for a melanoidin chromophore.  Methodology?  Still at the planning stage, maybe exploiting two known properties of melanoidins: (a) their anionic character - due to negative electric charge (carboxyl groups?) and (b) linked to that same anionic character, their ability to bind metal ions, which might  conceivably be exploited to develop a colorimetric or fluorimetric test.

Fig. 13: Here's what I consider might be a useful and potentially informative way forward worth considering for STURP Mk 2. It's a graphic from a posting I did way back in late 2012:

Cellulose, the incredibly resistant polymer that makes up the bulk of the plant kingdom (as cell walls) CAN be dissolved, or at any rate disaggregated as semi-solubilized. How? By adding a solution of copper (II) hydroxide in excess ammonia, which contains the Cu (NH3)4 ++ ion ("cuprammonium ion". What's more, the cellulose fibres can be re-precipitated, merely by acidification.

So how might that chemistry come in handy? It was McCrone's belief that the body image chromophore on the Linen was in the form of minute sub-micron particles, and while his attempts to identify those particles as iron oxide came to naught (and rightly so)  Raymond N.Rogers later offered an alternative more credible explanation - the particles comprise high molecular weight melanoidins , i.e. Maillard browning products.  This scientist will go one stage further and propose that those particles are locked away inside the cores of the SCW (secondary cell wall) of linen fibres. How did they get there? Answer: by entering the fibre cores as a liquid at high temperature, released from roasting white flour imprint, whereupon that liquid then rapidly polymerised and became entrapped in the SCW cores. That's what McCrone saw through his microscope!

Testing the hypothesis: take image-bearing fibres from the Linen. Disperse in the cuprammonium reagent to "dissolve" the cellulose of the SCW, releasing the chromophore particles. Spin off those solid micro-particles to separate from the solution. One then has free liberated chromophore that can then be tested with this or that chemical reagent - or examined with one or other physical technique - in order to pinpoint more precisely the chemical nature of the chromophore.

Fig.14: Here's a pair of graphics  I posted in 2017 to the International Skeptics Forum site, greeted with much derision  (that, namely derisive catcalling,  being the speciality of that now abandoned site !).

Why? Because I deployed a filter available in Windows 10 called "Zeke". What it does is to accentuate anything that is already particulate in nature,  whether body image or blood, allowing it to stand out better from background (artefactual maybe, but useful nonetheless - a kind of contrast-enhancement tool).

Fig.16: As stated elsewhere on many occasions, this investigator believes that the Linen with its imprinted image (as if left on Joseph of Arimathea's 'transport' stretcher) was inspired, nay prompted,  by the pre-mortem Veil of Veronica. Here's a few lines from the wiki entry:

"During the fourteenth century it  (the Veil of Veronica ) became a central icon in the Western Church; in the words of art historian Neil Macgregor: "From [the 14th Century] on, wherever the Roman Church went, the Veronica would go with it." The act of Saint Veronica wiping the face of Jesus with her veil is celebrated in the sixth Station of the Cross in many Anglican, Catholic, Lutheran, Methodist and Western Orthodox churches."

There's a large number of artistic representations of the Veil. I've chosen just one.

Note the way the face responds to 3D-rendering in ImageJ software!  "Unique encoded 3D" as    baldly declared by STURP for the Linen of Turin?

Fig 17: See how an imprint of a 14cm plastic figurine responds to ImageJ software. 

Unique encoded 3D?

Final summary of posting: 

The Linen  (no, NOT Shroud!) of Turin, fabricated in the mid- 14th century as a bigger and better rival to the Veil of Veronica, was NOT intended to be seen as the final burial shroud.
(So let's forget about resurrection imaging on the Third Day etc).

 No, it was  created as a trompe d'oeil, intended to represent the kind of image that might have been left on Joseph of Arimathea's "fine linen", deployed in transport mode from cross to tomb.

 Why is the body image a tone-reversed image?

Answer: because it it was intended to be seen as a body IMPRINT, created in bodily sweat in the first instance, then yellowed by centuries of ageing.

(Explaining the blood is a little more problematical: it does not appear to solely blood, or as some might say "blood". Other ingredients appear to be present (red clay according to microscopist Lucotte and Paris-based colleagues).   Yes, they can be explained, including the "blood first,  image second" chronology deduced by Adler and Heller's experiments with blood-digesting enzyme.

 A possible scenario is as follows: an adult human male was first smeared lightly with vegetable oil from head to foot, then sprinkled lightly FROM ABOVE (while in recumbent, i.e.  lying down mode) with plain white flour. The excess of flour was then shaken off, then a slurry of red clay trickled on to represent blood "in all the right places" to identify the mode of death (crucifixion) and what preceded it (scourging, crown of thorns etc) thus identifying the individual's fate according to Holy Scripture. 
The imprinted linen was then roasted, maybe in a bread-making oven, maybe over the glowing embers of a charcoal fire  - responsible  incidentally for those otherwise mysterious "poker holes" - to develop the body image colour as Maillard browning products. The clay areas were then overlaid with blood (real blood, or something that resembled it closely).

The final step, post-roasting, pre-addition of  ';real' blood, was to wash vigorously with soap and water to remove thick surface encrustation, leaving just a faint, dare one say ghostly image of a man's naked crucified figure.

Scourge marks?  As with bloodstains from "nails",  "crown of thorns" etc, they too show no presence in the body image, i.e. are entirely blood (or "blood"). They could have been added at any time (one still awaits data on whether they too are underneath or, conversely,  on top of the body image).

Claims that the Linen could simply have been "painted" to create the body image overlook one crucial feature - namely the negative (tone-reversed) body image.  STURP itself gave priority to the oh-so- tiresome  "just a painting" claim, which was correctly rejected.

What was  less understandable was the omission of any reference in the '81 Summary to the negative image, or to Adler and Heller's hugely significant finding that the body image chromophore was bleachable by 3 different chemical reagents, known to act on colour-conferring conjugated double bonds, i.e. organic, NOT inorganic chromophores.

The bleaching discovery should (by rights) have consigned the red ochre (iron oxide) claim of Walter McCrone immediately to the dustbin of history (but for unfathomable reasons did not do so, his successors at the  Chicago McCrone Research Institute  robotically continuing to trumpet it 40 years later on their founder's website!).

Let's not beat about the bush: the Turin Linen is a fraud, albeit a very clever one.  Its creators tried to conjure up a "1st century" reproduction of Joseph of Arimathea's 'transport linen' that was as realistic as possible, one that looked as if it had been created 1300 years earlier, one  that looked as it it had naturally aged for the following 1300 years prior to its (unexplained) appearance at a tiny Champagne village, albeit with a monarch-funded private chapel attached to the property of one of his leading knights in the land (read: King's favourite!)

The Linen of Turin is by far and away the most successful forgery in entire human history.

Why? Because it wasn't content to "paint" a facsimile version of Joseph of Arimeathea's transport linen.

Oh no! It set out to reproduce the manner of its making in as realistic a manner as possible, namely by whole-body imprinting, followed by an artificial ageing procedure. In short, it was meticulous in its attention to detail.  In modern terminology it was 'nerdy' and thus 'detail-obsessed'  in the extreme.

 But then bored under-occupied clerics attached to Geoffroi de Charny's chapel,  apparently 6 of them no less (link),  employed merely to pray constantly for his warrior soul,  forever at risk of being detached from his body in knightly mortal combat alongside his King, had to find ways to occupy their time...

They certainly made their mark on history - both 20th and 21st century. They opened the door to endless pseudoscience, introducing a cautionary note to the manner in which  modern-day "science" can either be applied - or MISAPPLIED!

Any time you, dear reader, suspect that "science" is being misapplied, ask yourself the following question: is the proponent of this or that seemingly-unscientific proposition addressing IN DETAIL objections from sceptics and other critics?

Or is their "science" in fact pseudoscience, mere window-dressing  intended as part of a marketing exercise, inviting no comment, no objections?

End of posting... (Aug 23, 2019)

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

So why does Stonehenge looks the way it does? Try imagining a bird's eye view. It was clearly intended to serve as a megalithic bird perch!

I've taken an artist's impression from the English Heritage website of how Stonehenge may have looked shortly after completion, circa 2500BC, with those mighty but mysterious sarsen-stone lintels in place. The latter have been colour coded - yellow for the TOPS of the 5 arch-like  trilithons, and pink for approx half of the  TOPS of surrounding stone circle.

I've added a token seagull (sorry it's upside down!). Why? Because what you see is a bird's eye view of Stonehenge that conveys a crucial aspect of that unique and stunning structure, one that is not immediately obvious to a tourist or other visitor viewing from ground level.


Why? Followers of this blog will be aware of the scientific "model" that has been developing here and on my specialist Stonehenge/Silbury Hill site these last 6 years.

I believe that Stonehenge was created as a "pre-crematorium", where the newly deceased were first subject to what is euphemistically termed "sky burial", aka excarnation, aka de-fleshing. (Or, as I prefer to call it, AFS (avian-facilitated skeletonization) - as still practiced in Tibet and elsewhere.

More to follow.

Addendum: March 16, 2018

Sorry to repeat myself, but I've decided to add the same image you see above as an addendum to ALL my Stonehenge postings (some 24 in all, here and on my specialist Stonehenge site). Why not – since it’s my considered answer to the ‘mystery’ of the monument’s peculiar architecture, the conclusion to some 6 years of  deliberation?

I say Stonehenge was designed as a giant bird perch, a ceremonial monument dedicated to ‘sky burial’, i.e. soul release from mortal remains to the heavens via AFS (avian-facilitated skeletonization, considered the height of fashion (and practicality) in Neolithic-era 2500BC! The stripped remains were then cremated, so an apt description of Stonehenge might, as previously suggested, be PRE-CREMATORIUM.

Thursday, January 18, 2018

Non, il n'y a rien d'unique dans les soi-disant propriétés 3D du Suaire de Turin! C'est une propriété générale de toutes les images imprimées! Même les taches de sang et les marques de rousseur répondent!

Affichage en construction.

Voici une série de photographies montrant des rendus en 3D d'une gamme d'images - en commençant par des images simples créées sur un ordinateur sans historique 3D, et se terminant par celles qui le font.

Étant donné qu'il n'y a pas de différence évidente dans la réponse 3D - tous réagissent à un logiciel préprogrammé qui convertit simplement la densité de l'image (peu importe son acquisition) en hauteur sur une troisième dimension entièrement imaginaire, autrement dit la hauteur sur un nouvel axe z.  J'espère que cet article dissipera une fois pour toutes la prétention que la réponse de l'image corporelle du Suaire de Turin dans les programmes informatiques de rendu 3D est unique ou différente à tous égards de celle d'autres empreintes, ou même de peintures .

On peut spéculer sur les raisons des différences de densité d'image sur l'image corporelle TS. Bien que l'on puisse supposer ou non que l'image originale et /ou 3D ait été dérivée d'un sujet 3D par un mécanisme ou un autre (impression par contact, photographie), on n'a pas le droit de conclure que la 3D-ness alléguée de l'image améliorée dit quelque chose sur la 3D-ness du sujet d'origine.

Oui, il est plus que probable que le 'sujet' soit 3D, ou peut-être un bas-relief, mais n'a pas besoin d'être dans le but de générer une réponse 3D dans un logiciel de rendu 3D approprié qui n'a aucun moyen de connaître l'histoire du sujet, ou connaissant la distance entre l'image et le sujet au moment de la capture de l'image.

Preuve? On peut faire une image grossière de l'image corporelle TS, et montrer qu'elle répond aussi étonnamment bien au logiciel de rendu 3D, bien que l'esquisse n'ait aucune histoire 3D.

Résumé: Le logiciel de rendu 3D répond simplement aux différences de densité d'image, et ne dit RIEN sur la manière dont ces différences ont été acquises, que ce soit par simple impression par contact ou par des moyens plus exotiques revendiqués par certains en sindonologie.

Here's a series of photographs showing 3D renderings of a range of images - starting with simple ones created on a computer with no 3D history, and ending with ones that do.  

Given there's no obvious difference in the 3D response - all of them  responding to pre-programmed software that simply converts image density (no matter how acquired)  to height on an entirely imaginary third dimension, i.e. height on a new z axis above the original xy plane - I hope this posting will dispel once and for all the claim that the response of the Turin Shroud body image in 3D-rendering computer programs is in any way unique, or different in any important respects from that of other imprints, or even paintings. 

One can speculate as to the reasons for the differences in image density on the TS body image. While one may or may not suppose the  original and/or 3D-rendered image to have been derived from a 3D subject by one or other mechanism (contact imprinting, some kind of photography) one is not entitled to conclude that the alleged 3D-ness of the enhanced image tells one anything about the 3D-ness of the original subject. 

Yes, it's more than probable that the 'subject' was 3D, or possibly a bas relief,  but did not need to be in order to generate a 3D-response in appropriate 3D-rendering software that has no way of knowing the history of the subject, or knowing the distance between image and subject at the moment of image capture.

Evidence? One can make a crude sketch image of the TS body image, and show that it too responds surprisingly well to 3D-rendering software, despite the sketch having no 3D history whatsoever.

Summary: 3D rendering sofware simply responds to differences in image density, and tells one NOTHING about the manner in which those differences were acquired, whether by simple contact imprinting or more exotic means that are claimed by some in sindonology.

1. Vue dorsale frontale du Suaire de Turin (Shroud Scope) avec contraste ajouté
(Frontal v dorsal views of Turin Shroud body image from Shroud Scope with added contrast)

2. Comme ci-dessus, après le rendu 3D dans le logiciel ImageJ. 
As above, after 3D-rendering in ImageJ software

3. Retour en 2012, cet enquêteur a souligné quelque chose de totalement inattendu si l'image du Suaire était "unique" comme revendiqué. Les 1532 marques de roussissement ont également répondu au rendu 3D!
Back in 2012, this investigator pointed out something totally unexpected if the Shroud image was "unique" as claimed. The 1532 scorch marks also responded to 3D-rendering!

4. On peut utiliser un logiciel graphique pour créer ses propres images sans historique 3D. Ils répondent également magnifiquement au logiciel de rendu 3D
One can use graphics software to create one's own images with no 3D history.  They also respond magnificently to 3D-rendering software

5. Même cette peinture ancienne de l'image du Voile de Veronica répond magnifiquement au logiciel de rendu 3D
Even this ancient painting of the image of the Veil of Veronica responds magnificently to 3D-rendering software

6. Sur la gauche est une empreinte de farine rôtie d'un jouet en plastique 3D (au centre). Cette empreinte a également répondu magnifiquement au logiciel de rendu 3D
On the left is a roasted flour imprint of a 3D plastic toy (centre). That imprint also responded magnificently to 3D-rendering software

7. L'empreinte la plus simple, comme celle de ma main mouillée sur le tissu, peut générer des images 3D, en commençant par l'image négative (tonalité inversée) ou la même après conversion en positif.
The simplest imprint, like this one of my wet hand onto fabric, can generate 3D-images, starting with the negative (tone-reversed) image or the same after conversion to a positive.

8. Une empreinte de farine de ma propre main a été utilisée pour produire cette image 3D de type Suaire
A flour imprint of my own hand was used to produce this Shroud-like 3D image 

9. La farine imprimant mon visage sur le lin a produit cette image, qui a également répondu un peu à la 3D. Le nez déformé était le résultat de presser mon visage dans le linge.
Flour imprinting my face onto linen produced this image, which also responded a little to 3D. The distorted nose was the result of pressing my face down hard into the linen.

10. Un croquis de charbon brut du visage de l'Homme sur le Linceul peut être amélioré, d'abord par inversion de tonalité (négative à positive) suivi d'un rendu 3D pour produire une image sans doute avec cette apparence sereine du Linceul!
A crude charcoal sketch of the face of the Man on the Shroud can be improved, first by tone-inversion (negative to positive) followed by 3D-rendering to produce an image arguably with that serene Shroud-like appearance!

11. Même si la conférence de Pasco, aux États-Unis, a été aussi récente que l'année dernière, on continue de prétendre que la réponse de Shroud au logiciel de rendu 3D est «unique». Où est la preuve pour soutenir cette demande?
Even as recent as last year's Pasco, USA conference, the claim continues to be made that the Shroud response to 3D-rendering software is "unique". Where's the evidence to back up that claim?

12. Voici la page de titre de la publication actuelle sur mon site de blog Shroud spécialisé
Here's the title page of the current posting on my specialist Shroud blogsite


Update, October 11, 2018

Here's a link to the current posting placed on my specialist Shroudie site!


(Yes, I take STERA's President to task for holding up the 1978 STURP enterprise as a model of good science! It was anything but - as a read of the inconclusive mealy-mouthed 1981 Summary will demonstrate, given its focus on the strawman 'just a painting' hypothesis, with no mention whatsoever of the unusual negative tone-reversed image. The latter should by rights have prompted STURP to shine the spotlight on imaging via direct-contact imprinting (instead dismissed in a few half-baked tests and negative conclusions).

Saturday, February 11, 2017

The evidence is OVERWHELMING that the Turin Shroud is authentic!

Or so says Perth-based Stephen E. Jones on his (dare one say) rabidly pro-authenticity blog site.

Here's a comment that I've just posted to that site. It's "awaiting moderation".  I don't expect it to appear (none of the occasional ones sent these last 5 years have done so).

Evidence for authenticity "overwhelming"? Nothing could be further from the truth. The evidence in fact is paltry and usually circumstantial, and even then, inconsistent and fragmentary.
 The radiocarbon date coincides with the first appearance of the TWO-FOLD, HEAD-To-HEAD image seen on the Lirey badge, whose date is self-evident from the De Charny coats-of-arms. All that is missing is a coherent narrative for the history and motivation, and one that accounts for what otherwise might seem enigmatic features - but which aren't in reality, once one has torn oneself away from the authenticity narrative.
This investigator has supplied the missing narrative, based on 5 years research and the resulting 'Model 10'. i.e. flour imprinting/thermal development/final water-washing.

The motivation? To simulate what a body imprint in sweat and blood onto Joseph of Arimathea's fine linen might look like 13 centuries later, acquired during TRANSPORT from cross to tomb. The TS was intended to be a whole-body rival to the then-celebrated Veil of Veronica, while based on broadly the same principles of image-acquisition. The negative image, 3D properties etc are exactly what one would expect from a contact image obtained with white flour onto wet linen, as I have repeatedly demonstrated these last 18 months, using 3D figurines as well as my own hand and face.

"Overwhelming" evidence for authenticity you say, when there's a rival narrative that ticks far more boxes?  How much longer are you prepared to blind yourself and others to the progress of science?

One could say more, much more about the tunnel vision of the pro-authenticity 'sindonological' mindset, one that will not admit, far less consider contrary thinking, or even acknowledge its existence on their tub-thumping websites.

 Such is the way of the world. The world that is intolerant of ideas contrary to one's own. The world that uses the internet to proselytize one's intolerant viewpoint.

Update: Tuesday 11th April: See my latest posting - a work in progress- on my specialist Shroud site:

STURP: Space-age Technology Unleashes Religious Propaganda

Update: Saturday 29th April: here's a copy of my 'cold call' request sent yesterday to the Quekett Microscopical Club  (it has a page on its site  - see link below- for those wishing to make contact).

Hello all you splendid Queketteers, amateurs and pros alike!

Is there anyone here among you interested  in the Turin Shroud?  I refer in particular to the ongoing problem as to how it acquired its faint allegedly enigmatic body image (negative, 3D properties, peculiar microscopic properties - like the so-called half-tone effect, colour discontinuities etc)?
Rarely a month goes by without some new mind-blowing scenario - pulsed laser beams, earthquakes, nuclear radiation, Da Vinci dabbling with proto-photography etc etc.

I've been attempting to model the Shroud image for some 5 years, and have settled on what I call Model 10, aka the roasted flour imprint. Yes, it's mundane alongside the ones just listed, but there you go, that's science bizz.

(Smear back of hand with vegetable oil, sprinkle with plain white flour from above, shake off excess flour, drape wet linen over flour-dusted hand, press linen firmly to capture a flour-imprint, suspend linen in oven, roast (approx 180-200 C)  till the imprint turns yellow or brown, wash vigorously to remove surface encrustation of Maillard browning products,  to be left with an 'enigmatic'  faint sepia stain - a negative image of one's hand  and fingers that gives a 3D response in ImageJ).

It's the microscopy that proving the problem - the cylindrical 3Dness of linen fibres, their light-refracting properties. Having a bargain-basement microscope that relies on a web cam to capture (blurred!) images on a laptop screen does not help either.

There are two possible solutions:
1. Invest in a better DIY microscope, hoping someone here can give expert advice
2. Seek one or more collaborators who's interested in the Shroud, and willing to be supplied with my Model 10 fibres, maybe with a view to submitting a joint publication to Quekett's own peer-reviewed journal.

I think my Model 10 is the answer, confirming medieval manufacture in accordance with the radiocarbon dating  (1260-1390) but if the image fibres fail to match up to the microscopic properties described by STURP and other investigators, then I'm willing to publically concede defeat (that being an occupational hazard of being a scientist, in this instance long-retired).

Here's a link to my specialist Shroud site:

and to one in particular (Sat July 1, 2017) hat addresses the issue of the "second face", arguably the last of the so-called enigmatic properties to be successfully reproduced by this long-term investigator:

My Model 10 – thermal imprinting with moist white medieval flour – can account for ALL the so-called enigmatic properties of the Turin Shroud

See also the recent thread on the International Skeptics Forum, where I participated as "meccanoman".

Colin Berry (PhD)

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Turin Shroud: how the agenda-driven so-called 'science' train came to be derailed.

The  current Flying Shroud of Turin locomotive (flying off its rails).

Well, I say it happened like this (approx chronological order):

1. It began with that astonishing landmark Secondo Pia tone-reversal (negative to PSEUDO-positive).

Yes, a truly arresting image conversion, deserving of much analysis and interpretation re the photograph-like appearance of that pseudo-positive on the right (above).

But that has been taken to mean the TS is a positive photograph, as recently as this last week (Stephen E. Jones site). NO!

Why not? Watch this space. Discussion will centre on  FREE-HAND SKETCHES and IMPRINTS, specifically contact imprints, NOT photographs.

As for contact imprints  - making the point better than sketches and photographs -  they have a long history, going back centuries ( like those brass rubbings in churches and cathedrals).

The concept of positive-negative would have been recognized long before photography, even if the terms were not employed.

2. Irrelevance of Walter McCrone's microscopy to the body image, attempting to implicate dispersed solid paint pigments - iron oxide, mercury sulphide etc, given that other STURP members, notably Heller and Adler, discovered that the image was bleachable with diimide (which acts ONLY on organic compounds with C=C double bonds). Same consideration applies to pop historian Charles Freeman - traditional inorganic paint pigments, fresh or faded, can be ruled out.
Details to come. Watch this space.

3. Attempts have been made to this day to exclude thermal processes, especially relevant in context of 'appropriate' medieval technology. How?  By reference to uv fluorescence. But they are not based on modern experimental data. They are based on the uv fluoresence of the charred edges of the 1532 burn holes, with claim that "all scorches fluorescence under uv". Taking as one's sole reference a centuries-old event involving fire, exceedingly high combustion or carbonization temperatures -  ones creating full thickness burns, not mere scorches - is pseudoscience.  Scorches incidentally are just one type of thermal  change.

Details  to come -watch this space.

4. Rogers' starch-coating theory:  good inasmuch as it considered the possibility of the image being an added coating, highly superficial,  instead of on the linen per se. But why did he stop at purified starch, and proceed to develop a theory as if starch were equivalent to - or easily transformable to - a reducing sugar? Answer: he cited Pliny, 1st century linen technology, betraying (intentionally or otherwise) a pro-authenticity bias that hitherto had been well-concealed. He should have considered a wider range of coatings, including those that could have been deployed in a medieval context.

Details to come. Watch this space.

5.  The TS body image responds to computer software programs that map image density as height, ie. creating an imaginary z (vertical) dimension. So what? All imprints and indeed diagrams with no 3D history respond the same - it being a function of the software and the way it re-processes image density - NOT a tool for investigating supposed "encoded 3D information".  Yup, starry-eyed  hyping - up of the so-called 3D properties of the TS, as if specific for the TS, with inappropriate refs to conventional photographs performing poorly - distortions etc - only to be expected due to lateral lighting, shadowing etc. (focus should be on imprints!).

Details to come.  Watch this space.

6. The blood story. First on scene was the pathologist Robert Bucklin MD, publishing and proselytizing his pro-authenticity views way back in the 60s, long before STURP, using the terms "bloodstain" and "wound" interchangeably. NO! There is no evidence on the body image for wounds as distinct from blood, despite explicit claims to the contrary. It is entirely unscientific to describe a bloodstain as a "wound", if there is no independent evidence in the body image for speared, flayed or punctured skin. Even the scourge marks are blood imprints ONLY!

Details to come.  Watch this space.

7. Failure of STURP to provide convincing evidence for the existence of blood-derived porphyrins - an essential criteria for identifying the stains as derived from blood.  Atypical porphyrin spectra, coupled with claims the blood was "too red" were  attributed to presence of  'extraordinary levels of bilirubin' with no hard evidence for the presence of ANY  bilirubin (which is photochemically unstable and unlikely to survive for months, far less centuries).  As with Rogers. the 'bilirubin trauma' hypothesis betrayed a pro-authenticity leaning, unbecoming surely of hands-on researchers willing to investigate (and exclude ) the painting hypothesis while failing to display appropriate scepticism elsewhere.

"Blood-before-image' claim, based on enzymic micro-spotting test was interesting,  possibly true, but questionable in the light of other data, notably the so-called half-tone effect which means that blood-coated fibres sampled with sticky-tape from' image areas' cannot be assumed to have been image-bearing fibres, as appears to have been the case. Yup, blind-spot territory ...

Details to come. Watch this space.

8. Returning to the body image (it being the basis of the "enigmatic" tag): there has been indecent haste to exclude contact-imprinting, based on image-intensity data that assumes linen draped loosely over a body, making limited contact.  We are quickly asked to consider imaging across air-gaps,  of "cloth-body" distance being critical, albeit with peculiar qualfications (max distance of separation not to exceed approx 4 cm for example). That model 'begs the question' i.e. assumes the very thing that is being tested, making for a circular argument. What if the cloth had NOT been draped loosely, as in a 1st century tomb, but pressed firmly against some body features and not others, with conscious control over which parts to imprint, what not.  (Consider selective application of imprinting medium also).

Details to come. Watch this space.

9. The assumption that image formation occurred across air gaps, with exclusion of contact imprinting as the sole mechanism, has led to those "radiation" models, associated at least initially by STURP team leader John Jackson. with resort to biblical "resurrection" scenarios that permit a body and /or linen to merge in space ("collapsing cloth" theory"). That has no place in a scientific context, being impossible to put to an experimental test., being merely a highly-coloured interpretation, wishful-thinking some might think.

Details to come.  Watch this space.

10. X-ray or gamma-ray imaging? Based on claims that the fingers are 'too boney" or teeth are imaged, with failure to consider, far less to model experimentally, contact-imaging that might well produce such effects through providing something more resistant under the linen than soft tissue.

Details to come. Watch this space.

11. Assumption that the TS represents a "burial shroud", when the biblical record suggests otherwise (namely that Joseph of Arimathea's's linen was intended solely for dignified TRANSPORT of a bloodied, naked or near-naked man from cross to tomb, NOT as final burial shroud.

 See my late 2014 posting from this site for more details, including artistic representation, e.g:

Here's Joseph of Arimathea's 'clean linen' being used as an improvised means of transport from cross to tomb, with no biblical evidence it was ever used, or intended to be used as final burial shroud. (Di Ciseri, 1883).

See also this posting from my specialist Shroud site with more artwork showing the Shroud being deployed in 'transport mode'.

Resurrection scenarios for image formation are excluded in the transport-only model if J of A's linen was replaced with 'winding strips' as suggested by the Gospel according to John. Instead, the focus should be on the possibility that the TS was an attempt to recreate what a sweat/blood imprint onto a transport shroud might look like 13 centuries later.

Details to come. Watch this space.

12.Failure to give due consideration or even acknowledge that the TS body  image may have been an attempt to simulate a sweat imprint, with bloodstains alone used to implicate a  particular  and highly revered crucified body , i.e. that of Jesus of Nazareth, with crown of thorns (missing), lance wound, nails wounds etc. (See previous ref to blood that serves as proxy for "wounds" that are otherwise absent from body image).

Details to come. Watch this space.

13. Failure to acknowledge the resources at the disposal of Geoffroi de Charny (France's King John the Good's favourite, both when younger as fellow 100 Year's War combatants and later at the Royal Court ), the king having financially assisted his knight/comrade-in-arms  in founding and staffing a so-called private chapel (5 -6 staff!). Those hired clerics may well have been the initiators, possibly even artisans, who originated the idea/project to recreate J of A's transport linen with a simulated sweat/blood imprint. Sindonology rarely considers the crucial  and arguably historical role of G de C and his wife, later widow, despite both their individual coats-of-arms appearing on that Lirey pilgrim's souvenir badge (Cluny Museum)  indicating a determined effort to attract pilgrims from far and wide ,the latter paying handsomely no doubt for the indulgences etc to be had at the oh-so-fashionable "Shroud"  shrine, a rival and closer attraction than the then extant 'Veil of Veronica'.

Details to come.  Watch this space.

14. Italy's Govt. supported ENEA research institute (team-leader Paolo Di Lazzaro): uv laser modelling. No image - mere superficial coloration only. No detailed consideration of likely chromophore - merely refs to cellulose as the target, despite that carbohydrate  consisting entirely of stable C- C, C-O  and O-H single bonds - i.ie no C=C or other double bonds as is usually the case for molecules that are susceptible to chemical change resulting from absorption of energetic uv radiation.

Sure, the coloration may be superficial, but it's wrong to assume that supernatural radiation is the only means of producing a superfical image, with laser pulses offered optimistically as a weak modern-day proxy  (the nearest man-made equivalent you understand).

Let's not mince our words - it was deplorable pseudoscience to make that suggestion, especially when accompanied by refs to philosophy, theology etc and being described as "scientists" in newspaper headlines when in fact the investigators were laser-technologists, said to be working after hours with their Govt-supplied hardware  to promote and proselytize their preferred take on scripture.


The major failure in this list, 14 points so far?  I would nominate that failure to consider the TS as a sweat imprint, whether as I believe simulated (14th century) or even 'authentic' of 1st century origin, there being a clear ambition to link the TS image with supernatural flash of radiation at the instant of biblical resurrection. See banner on Stephen E. Jones 'blog'  (manifesto?) for the continuing attempt to make that link, based not on science but PSEUDOSCIENCE.

So where does one go to find the non-derailed still-on-track science, steadily chuffing along, making progress, month after month, year after year?  Why, my specialist Shroud site of course, started in early Spring 2012, reporting  researches in real time (some 350 postings there and elsewhere to date)!

This investigator's specialist Shroud site (showing current posting at 13 Oct, 2016 with modelling of TS body image using 1/12 scale 'Galaxy Warrior figurines)

The cureent model (and indeed I suspect the FINAL one) is what I call the oil/flour thermal-imprinting model. See the above link for details.

I've also added a series of photographs on a recently-resurrected subsidiary Shroud site showing how it's done in 10 simple steps. I used my own hand as 'subject' to show how the imprinting technique works as well if not better with human skin.

Flour/oil imprints of my hand at the oven-roasting stage (approx 190-200 degrees C).

 One can try it out in one's own home, if one has an hour or two to spare.

Postscript: New Year's Eve, 2016: have put up a new posting on my main Shroud site, under the title: "What's Dan Porter up to these days...?".  For the last year there's been a Dan-shaped hole in the Shroudie blogosphere!